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December 13, 2018

How Many Landing Pages Do You Really Need?

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Research suggests that sites that have ten to fifteen landing pages drive 55% more conversions than those with fewer than 10 landing pages. That’s already impressive enough; but consider that sites with over forty landing pages can increase conversions by as much as 500%.

More reasons to have more landing pages

More targeted marketing opportunities

As we mentioned above, the research shows that more landing pages mean more conversions. The reason for this is simple: when you try to talk to everybody, you end up talking to nobody.

It’s a harsh marketing truth that many still don’t seem to understand. You have to segment your customers and craft messages that answer their specific problems. This laser-like focus is ideal for driving conversions, because there are no mixed messages to distract from your value to this particular customer.

Landing pages make it possible to create a series of vertical marketing messages that target highly specific industries. You can be as detailed and as narrow in your scope as you like, because you know that you can just create a new landing page if you want to target a different sub-group.

More creativity and flexibility

With all of the marketing emails, sites, and ads being thrown around, it’s no wonder that customers are jaded. Even enthusiastic customers will disengage after you’ve offered them your tenth case study in a row.

But landing pages allow you the freedom to get creative with your offers. Contests, sweepstakes, polls, and other inbound marketing ideas are simple ways to bring in new traffic. Multiple dedicated landing pages mean each one of them can be given the attention they’re due.

The best part? You don’t have to stop providing case studies to those who still value them. You’re just spreading your creative wings to give other customers something they find interesting.

More SEO power

How many pages does the average company site have? Twenty? Thirty? All of them contribute to SEO through effective use of keywords, metadata, and backlinking.

What if you added the power of forty (or more) SEO-optimized landing pages to the mix? Each of them tuned to add value to a highly specific audience?

Many marketers end their landing page promotions prematurely, thinking they’re short term solutions. But in reality, these SEO-focused landing pages can be a long-term benefit to your web traffic.

Of course, having a large number of landing pages only helps if they’re good landing pages. Bad (or even average) landing pages aren’t going to generate enough business to be worth the effort.

So we’ve compiled some tips that can help you make each landing page a gem all on its own.

Best practices for effective landing pages

Create an effective headline

Headlines are the most important part of a landing page, because they’re generally what lets people know whether or not they’re in the right place to begin with! It doesn’t matter how nice or compelling your CTA is if your headline doesn’t draw people in.

You can craft an effective headline by:

  • Focusing on a single desirable concept or object (that the user wants)
  • Being concise and to the point
  • Teasing users with new or compelling information
  • Commanding them to take action

Create an effective CTA

A landing page that doesn’t convert is a waste of space. Help your users take the next step by making their decision easy and desirable. Increase the likelihood of audiences converting by:

  • Focusing on a single CTA
  • Making it visually compelling
  • Using short, action-oriented words (e.g. “join” or “get”)
  • Delivering an obvious benefit to the user

Write scannable copy

Headlines draw people in, but it’s the copy that gets them to stay. CTAs help people to convert, but the copy is what convinces them it’s the right thing to do. Landing page copy is as much art as it is science, but there are some key principles that can make any landing page effective:

  • Talk about why your customer should value your offer (benefits), not what your offer does (features)
  • Speak your audience’s language
  • Use actual customer quotes
  • Keep it short and concise

Use images effectively

Nobody wants to read a landing page that’s just one big block of text. You might as well read an email! Images help add to the design and appeal of the page and can even make customers more likely to convert. Especially if you:

  • Place images at the start / early into the page
  • Have your image direct attention to the copy
  • Use the image to show the desired outcome
  • Keep the image / design simple and uncluttered

Optimize for SEO

We mentioned earlier how SEO-optimized landing pages could help boost your overall web traffic. We don’t want you to obsess over a landing page’s code with a fine-toothed comb, but we do want you to follow a few general principles.

  • Publish to a custom URL (not a vendor subdomain like mysite.instapage.com)
  • Choose keywords and apply them strategically
  • Gather backlinks to the landing page

Video landing pages

Video landing pages can be a fantastic way to convert users, far more than regular landing pages, but only if you do them right. If they fall flat, they fall hard. They require more time and effort and creativity, but the payoff can be enormous.

Make your video landing pages soar by:

  • Keeping your video short (very short)
  • Investing in high production values
  • Eliciting powerful emotions
  • Having a clear and understandable CTA

Of course, you’re not always going to get the best performance out of your landing page right away. There’s always going to be room for improvement.

Testing and optimizing your landing page

As with anything digital—whether your website, emails, or landing pages—progress is made in inches. You have to constantly test and refine your landing page in order to get the best possible conversions. (Sort of like fine-tuning a high-performance car.)

Know what you’re testing for

There are two basic landing page metrics that marketers track:

  • Visits
  • Conversions

And they are indeed important. High visits but low conversions indicate that your CTA needs work, while the reverse means you probably need to work on your headline or SEO.

But there’s a third metric that is just as important: Cost per Acquisition (CPA).

How much did it cost you to get a customer to convert? Did you have a high AdWords budget? Were the production costs on that landing page video super high? The lower your CPA, the more effective and more sustainable your landing page is.

There are more metrics of course, but these three are the most commonly valued. The push and pull between these metrics are what will drive your optimization efforts.

Test one element at a time

It might be tempting to update multiple things on your landing page “while you’re doing it anyway,” but that’s exactly the wrong tactic to take. You won’t be able to figure out what contributed to the change in traffic/CTAs if there are multiple suspects.

You could possibly also do multivariate testing, in which you test a combination of changes instead of just one (e.g. variant 1 = new picture and copy, vs variant 2 = new picture and headline), but that requires a lot more traffic than regular A/B testing.

Don’t settle for one test

A/B testing is a game of incremental changes. A few hundred clicks here, a few thousand clicks there. As you continue to test over time, you’ll be able to look back to where you started and see just how much progress you actually made.

Additional testing tools and metrics like heatmaps, time on site, and repeat visits can also unlock new insights you can use to improve your landing page.

Pay attention to sample size

A meaningful sample size is one of the most important components to a successful marketing test. Too small of a sample, and you may see trends that won’t hold up on a larger scale. Too large of a sample, and you’re wasting time and effort.

Finding the right sample size can involve some complicated math, but many A/B testing solutions will offer algorithms that take care of that for you. If you’re taking more of a DIY approach, you’ll want to make sure your sample size is routinely “as large as you can afford.” A few thousand impressions should be enough to give you a good idea of which option is more popular.

Great landing page examples to inspire

Geico

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Everyone’s favorite lizard (besides Godzilla) comes in with a big, bold, simple message and an even simpler CTA. Enter your ZIP code and begin your quote! The clean design makes it easy for visitors to figure out what needs to happen next.

Hubspot

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Hubspot’s landing page tells visitors exactly what they’re going to get and how it benefits them, and greases the wheels by providing a very short 3-field form. Simple, functional, and effective.

Indeed

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Indeed’s landing page packs in a lot of information, but makes it work thanks to effective copy that clearly introduces the brand while communicating benefits. The CTA is obvious and simple (just your email address).

So how many landing pages do you truly need? Simple:

As many as you can handle.

Additional reading, picked just for you

How Many Landing Pages Do You Really Need?

December 24, 2018

Happy Holidays!

Season's Greetings! We wish you a very happy holiday season from all of us here at Redstamp.

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